|Eric Gates one of Bobby Robsons Ugly's and the first scorer against Charlton at Selhurst|
Tuesday, 21 September 2010
The Selhurst Experiment - A cost worth paying
Is it really only 25 years? It feels like a life time, ok for some of the addicted 25 years is more than a lifetime.
Ironically, 25 years on and stoke has a different significance to me, as I took my youngest to Uni there last weekend, totally oblivious to the historical significance of the club, but berating the traffic as West Ham were playing at the Britannia.
Unlike most if not all other Addick fans, the closure of the Valley was a positive for me (quick duck as things are thrown at me), but before I am too berated let me explain.
I switched as I explained elsewhere on this blog from armchair supporting
to actively watching Charlton in 1969 and was a fairly regular attendee until around 1979, except the times when I got a really poor school report, when my mum banned me from going. Around this time I stopped going, partly due to marriage in ’80 and moving away. I basically missed the Elliot and Walsh years and, to be honest, the we’re going into admin years. Chelsea
In ’82 I moved to
, and was there till just after the valley closure, popping down to see my parents in Forest Hill and In Laws in Catford, once a month. Hull
Then it happened, salvation from parents, I could leave my wife with my parents or hers. The idea of Charlton sharing a ground was, to coin a phrase, a ground breaking event in English football, seen as the future of English football, soon Man U would share with Man City, Liverpool with Everton, Arsenal with Spurs, West Ham with Orient and Millwall ……. Ok no one wants to share with Millwall. And 25 years later the number of sharing clubs, moving on from our and Palaces experiment is ….. none!!! OK Palace went on to fleece
Wimbledon and we went on to play at Upton Park.
25 years ago, an experiment in football started, strangely enough whilst it alienated a huge number of Charlton fans for me it was a success, because it brought me back into the fold. Some may say that it was too big a cost, but you won’t hear that from me, especially as it meant I did not have to spend Saturday afternoons with the family!!!!!